This is Mr Victor DeLorenzo, who was a founding member of folk/punk icons Violent Femmes and an artist extraordinaire! In 1993, DeLorenzo departed the group to act and make solo records with ‘Tranceaphone’ EP being the first recording under his name since 2013 and his sixth release overall, and it is a five-track offering full of intriguing fusion and fun. Fun, in this case, means the unstoppable force he carries along in order to create some pretty intriguing grooves and songs that are, y’ know, almost beyond any genre. Call it indies, call it alternative rock, call it emerging new punk music, call it whatever you like, but there is always this distinctive one thing about him; he rocks in his own unique way with friends, i.e. DeLorenzo is also one-half of the chamber rock duo Nineteen Thirteen with cellist Janet Schiff and was previously the drummer in Moe Tucker‘s band, which also included former Velvet Underground bandmate Sterling Morrison in the mid to late 90s.
DeLorenzo‘s signature sound is a result of his minimalist drum set. He often uses nothing more than a snare drum, a tranceaphone, and steel brushes. The tranceaphone consists of a metal bushel basket inverted over a tom. He favors this style of drum set because, in their early days, The Femmes often played on the streets.
And here comes the new record with this team as they performed each track in the studio:
‘Tranceaphone’: Victor DeLorenzo – Tranceaphone, Gretsch snare drum, Cymbal, Bass, Vocal; Mike Hoffmann – Electric Guitars, Vocal; Janet Schiff – Synth Strings
‘Lullaby’: Victor – Vocal, Keyboards, Drumsets, Percussion; Janet – Cello, Keyboards, Bass; Mike – Electric Guitar
‘Invisible Shadows’: Victor – Vocals, Bass, Keyboards, Drumsets, Percussion; Janet -Keyboards
‘Then Don’t Say A Word’: Victor – Drumsets, Vocals, Keyboards; Janet – Bass, Synth Vocals, Keyboards
‘When She’s There’: Victor – Vocals, Drumsets, Percussion, Keyboards; Monia – Vocal; Matt Meixner – Keyboards; Janet – Bass
Groovy, new indie rock music, ‘sleazy’ up to a point, and certainly a very catchy and ‘social’ tune as all songs are in the album. What stays, after all, is a collection of five songs that will make you have a good time with them also bringing along an utterly colorful audition.
“I wanted to write a collection of music that suggests a story but doesn’t really lay anything out in a concrete way. A mystery of omission featuring a folk/art instrument as a good luck charm. Whatever happens to the maybe woman and man in this story is anybody’s guess, but the cadence of the lyrics against the musical thought intrigues me. It’s like listening to a film noir feature if pictures could sing,” says Victor DeLorenzo.
And if you were attracted by these two songs, wait ’cause there’s more! I don’t really know the musical roots of DeLorenzo’s but I guess that roots becoming every phase in musicians’ lives. I was trying to listen to these roots and I clearly heard all things alternative music from the 80s until now, and pardon me, Victor is among these many indeed musicians who push it all forward and who don’t really have any issues in blending their trademark styles with other elements. Sometimes with old musings (the blues i.e.), other times from their youth’s craze (call it whatever alternative you like), and often with new playing techniques or even with new musical ‘spices’ along the way.
The quality of this record came at the end when it simply made me replay it at home. Each and every record you listen to it for the first time and then you instantly replay it, these are all the really successful albums and ‘Tranceaphone’ is absolutely one of these. It was released on March 19 and is available digitally across key online stores and online streaming platforms, including Spotify and Apple Music.
Keep up with Victor DeLorenzo:
Written by Loud Cities Mike